The University of Kerala is likely to go in for a fresh election to identify the representative of its Senate on the three-member search committee that will shortlist candidates for the post of Vice-Chancellor.

The meeting of the university Syndicate scheduled for April 27 is expected to discuss the advice given by university standing counsel George Poonthottam to go in for fresh elections to identify the Senate’s representative in the search committee.

Letter to university

It is understood that Mr. Poonthottam, in a letter to the university last week, said the procedure adopted by it for initially electing Senate member S.P. Deepak and later, V. Sivankutty, MLA, as the Senate’s representative was not in tune with Section 10(1) of the University Statues of 1977.

Syndicate member B.S. Jyothikumar confirmed to The Hindu the contents of Mr. Poonthottam’s letter to the university.

“The correct procedure in this case is for the Senate to meet and for a name or names to be proposed at that meeting. If there is more than one name, an election by balloting is to be held at the meeting itself. If there is just one name, that person is to be declared as having been unanimously elected. In the case of both Mr. Deepak and Mr. Sivankutty, the university called for nomination papers and then declared the results,” a university source said.

In November 2012, Mr. Deepak, a Democratic Youth Federation of India leader, had lost his Senate seat and his seat on the search committee when the Governor “withdrew his pleasure” from his candidacy to the Senate. Sometime later, Mr. Sivankuttty, also a Senate member, was unanimously elected to the search committee.

Mr. Deepak has separately challenged both his removal and Mr. Sivankutty’s election.

The previous Vice-Chancellor, A. Jayakrishnan, demitted office in December 2012 and Higher Education Principal Secretary K.M. Abraham has been holding charge since then.

Pro VC’s term

Meantime, the term of the incumbent Pro Vice-Chancellor of the university J. Prabhash will come to an end on May 25. Unlike in the case of a Vice-Chancellor, no search committee needs to be constituted for selecting a Pro Vice-Chancellor.


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